Jan Pinder takes a short break in Amsterdam over the ever buzzy Queens Day.
Spring in Amsterdam is the time to experience the full beauty of the tulip fields, and the party atmosphere.
We used the newly expanded Southend Airport; a rail link runs from Liverpool Street, to a station at the airport, with an EasyJet Flight to Amsterdam. It proves a hassle free journey.
We arrived on the weekend of April 30th, which is Queens Day in Holland, which commemorates the birthday of the late Queen Beatrice. Every year the whole country parties.
It’s tradition, to wear something orange but we were ill equipped, orange not forming a key part of my travel wardrobe. The city is a riot of orange. Jazz bands play in the streets, as boats glide past, filled with party goers dancing to music.
We stayed in the centre of Amsterdam at the Grand Hotel Amrath. It’s an Art Deco building, previously, the shipping offices for the city, now refurbished to make an attractive hotel, its many Art Deco features still intact.
To get around the city, there is an excellent network of Hop on Hop Off, canal boats and a bus.
For one payment, you can use three canal routes and the bus for 48 hours, which stop at the main points of interest to visit: The Flower Market, The Anne Frank House, and the museums, which house many works by great artists, such as Van Gough etc. are a few of the things to see.
Of course there is the famous bike network throughout the city. Hire a bike to get around as the natives do. Also easy to walk through, this city has much to offer.
The Sky bar on the top floor of the Hilton Double Tree Hotel is a must after sundown.
Listen to the DJ playing, while you watch the lights of the city below. Try a cocktail inside, or on the outside decking area; Truly a panoramic sight.
We drove into the countryside, passing the stunningly pretty tulip fields, to visit the Keukenhof Gardens, replanted every year. They are a riot of patterns and colour. Not to be missed, and don’t forget your camera.